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  1. #1
    Hang 'Em High Reckless Fable's Avatar
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    11.28.17 @ 10:56 AM
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    Default What was story behind the first time you saw the Mighty Van Halen live?

    I'll let Coulda continue with the Versus and Ranking Threads. He should trademark them.

    I like stories and narrative, so here's one for ya:

    What was story behind the first time you saw the Mighty Van Halen live?

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  3. #2
    5150 What a Rocker 1973's Avatar
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    11.11.17 @ 08:55 AM
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    I became a fan of the band in 1984 when I was 10. First time I saw them was when I was senior in high school in the spring of 1992. Saw them at Albuquerque's Tingley Coliseum. I always preferred the classic era even then but it was great seeing Eddie do his thing live for the first time. My jaw dropped during Eruption. Saw that version two more times, but 2007 was a dream come true for me. That was the concert I was waiting to see my whole life. Seen the current line up four times since 07.

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  5. #3
    Atomic Punk RRvh1's Avatar
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    My first time seeing Van Halen was easily one of the greatest nights of my life...

    VH headlined the Canada Day Festival in 1993, at Molson Park, in Barrie Ontario. They were touring in support of the RHRN album.
    About ten of us loaded up in a van (pun intended!) and headed out a day early, to get ready for the spectacle. The entire grounds were a huge tail gate party. Tons of VH cranking, beer, weed, girls, all around great vibes.

    None of the singer debates or internet BS - just thousands of VH fans hanging out and waiting to have their minds collectively blown... We heard the soundcheck the night before the show, and were stoked that the band were literally just a few hundred feet away. Two females vixens came to the fence and said "Eddie wants us to give these to you", and handed out autographed picks! Awesome...

    It was a general admission venue, and after watching the other bands, I literally got to the front row!!!

    I actually touched Mike and Sammy, as well as Vince Neil and Steve Stevens from one of the opening bands, which also included Alannah Myles, The Jayhawks, Kim Mitchell, Vince Neil.
    Seeing VH for the first time was like a religious experience, and one that is forever engrained into my memory. Being 5 feet away from Eddie was one of the thrills of my lifetime.

    The band was amazing to say the least, and I loved seeing Ed's wall of 5150 amps and his rack of EBMM guitars. I have a dvd boot of this show, which I've burnt for a few members on here, yet the quality isn't that great. I've been searching for pro-shot footage for quite some time...
    "There's too many people on this basketball that's floating around the sun, who are too afraid to allow themselves to FEEL" - Edward Van Halen
    "Van Halen was never about the singer..." - a very wise fan.
    "Embrace the past. Live in the moment but keep your eyes on the future, and keep on moving forward..." - Richie Sambora

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  7. #4
    Atomic Punk CaboChris's Avatar
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    14 years old. Cow Palace.

    It was THE talk of the town. My mom, bless her soul...bought 5 tickets.

    For a single woman not making much money, that was a sacrifice because it was a luxury. The weeks leading up to the show, two of my buddies and I did nothing but anticipate. I told both of them that I would take them, knowing full well, that I wasn't going to take one of them. That was fucked up. It still bothers me to this day, even though the friend I didn't take and I are still cool. I ended taking my best friend. We're all still friends today, though and it's water under the bridge.

    It's me, my best friend and two of my older brothers and one of their friends.

    I was a little stoner and was already a veteran of getting high and partying. We're on our way and I notice my brothers trying to be sneaky about snorting some crank. Me and my best friend were thinking to ourselves, "what about us"? "You ain't fooling anybody".

    Anyway, we get to the venue and it's GA. I was fucking excited as all fuck. Scared shitless too because I'd never been to a concert. I remember hearing "Over The Hills And Far Away" for the first time over the PA and liking it. I also recall a Cholo wearing a VH shirt and bobbing his head up and down to Zep. It struck me as odd, that he was a fan and has stuck with me ever since. Lights go out and hell breaks loose. BTO got annihilated by the brutal audience. Toilet paper rolls flung at them. VH hits the stage and pandemonium breaks out. I could barely stay on two legs from the constant crowd pushing. Basically, I was fighting for my life while trying to concentrate on Edward. I couldn't believe I was that close to him. He was in his LWAN get up. I was wearing a White and red CVH cap that I wore EVERYDAY. I could've swore I saw Ed smile at me. I was so close that I could see bubblegum on the bottom of his shoe when he sat down for his solo.

    My friend and I both bought "VH Kicks Ass" t-shirts and were sportin' them the next day. We looked hella stupid because we were walking around town wearing the same shirt like twins.

    Lots of peoole were wearing VH shirts around town and we all looked at each other in silent approval.

    The next day my friend who didn't go, was like "what happened to you guys..I was waiting".

    Instant guilt and felt like shit.

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  9. #5
    Baluchitherium noise next door's Avatar
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    Default

    Toronto
    (Maple Leaf Gardens)
    May 79
    10th row floors

    We had no idea what was about to happen to us. We had all seen many shows but this took things to another level altogether. In hindsight, the 2 recordings we had heard were nothing compared to the live show... they had easily blown every band we had seen off the stage.

    They were redefining the art form and it was fun to watch...

    Light Up the Sky
    Somebody Get Me a Doctor
    Runnin' With the Devil
    Dance the Night Away
    Beautiful Girls
    On Fire
    You're No Good
    Jamie's Cryin
    Feel Your Love Tonight
    Outta Love Again
    Ice Cream Man
    Ain't Talkin Bout Love
    You Really Got Me
    Bottoms Up




  10. #6
    Top Of The World
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    Quote Originally Posted by What a Rocker 1973 View Post
    I became a fan of the band in 1984 when I was 10. First time I saw them was when I was senior in high school in the spring of 1992. Saw them at Albuquerque's Tingley Coliseum. I always preferred the classic era even then but it was great seeing Eddie do his thing live for the first time. My jaw dropped during Eruption. Saw that version two more times, but 2007 was a dream come true for me. That was the concert I was waiting to see my whole life. Seen the current line up four times since 07.
    Also my first time seeing Van Halen. I remember during the first song someone handed Sammy a Zack Morris phone and he talked to whoever was on the other end over the mic at the end.

    It was on the day that I realized that Sammy Hagar got it.

    Your pal,
    Dr. Penis M.D.

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  12. #7
    Atomic Punk
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    12.23.16 @ 10:32 AM
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    April 22, 1986
    Rosemont Horizon (and I still call it that. Fuck you "Allstate Arena" lol)
    Rosemont, IL


    You Really Got Me
    There's Only One Way to Rock
    Summer Nights
    Get Up
    Drum Solo
    Why Can't This Be Love
    5150
    Bass Solo
    Panama
    Best of Both Worlds
    Good Enough
    Guitar Solo
    I Can't Drive 55
    Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love

    Encore:
    Jump
    Rock Candy
    Rock and Roll


    Not just my first VH concert, it was my first concert ever. Never knew music could be THAT loud. Holy shit. Me and my buddy waited out in line overnight to buy tickets months before and we still ended up with the worst possible seats as far back in the balcony as you could get , yet at the time, we didn't care, it was awesome! We were in the building!!! All of this was new, the beer soaked floor, the pot smoke in the air. The Merch table. $14 for a shirt??? WTF lol now I'd be glad to pay that little for a concert shirt. Hell the tix were only like $16 I think? Maybe less.

    BTO opened, I was a kid, didnt' really know anything other than "Takin Care of Business". Ok, they're done. Then the wait for VH. It felt like eternity.

    House lights off....screaming, darkness....then Ed starts wailin. YES!!!!! Still dark, still wailin......drums........ Stop. HELLLLLOOOO CHICAGOOOOOOOOOOO (guitar into to YRGM)

    Lights come on.......it was like when THe Wizard of Oz goes from black and white to COLOR. Amazing. The energy, they were so amped up (and probably coked up lol) We were blown away the rest of the show. Voices thrashed from screaming for 2 hours. My first Ed solo was a religious experience, one of many more to come. I mean FUUUUUCK, the guy is A GUITAR GOD.

    What a show, still one of the best I've seen.


    They added a second Chicago show after the first one sold out, here's the audio. Couldn't find any recordings of the first night



    Second show I ever saw....DLR with Cinderella. Another show that ranks nar the top. Dave had a lot to prove and he did, that show was incredible.
    Last edited by Greenpaw; 03.10.16 at 01:50 PM.

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  14. #8
    Atomic Punk jrk5150's Avatar
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    1988 OU812 tour, soph year in college, like 5 of us piled into my RA's station wagon for the hour and 20 minute drive to the Worcester Centrum. Was also my first concert for any band. Paid like $25/ea for nose bleeds. The seats ruined the experience. When they lowered the lighting rack, couldn't even see the band. It SUCKED. I swore then that there had to be a better way, I was never going to see this band from shitty seats again.

    October-ish 1991, FUCK tour, again in Worcester. Pretty much my second concert ever unless you count shows in my college gymnasium like John Cafferty or 3rd Bass. I looked up "tickets" in the yellow pages and called a broker in Hartford. Got two seats on the floor, 17th row (in front of Mike), for $85/ea. That was big money when I was only making $23k/year, but I also didn't have a mortgage/wife/kids.

    Took my girlfriend who is now my wife.

    Absofuckinglutely blew me away. I vividly remember the Hendrix version of the national anthem came on, and that started getting the crowd pretty fired up, even started the wave. The crowd noise just kept building during the song, and right as it was ending, I yelled to my wife that they should come out now. The lights cut, Ed's drill hit the guitar strings and the roar was deafening, I didn't think it could get louder. Until the lights came on right as the band kicked in, with Sammy in mid-jump, and the fucking roof blew off the place.

    Still, to this day, the single most intense concert moment of my life. Easily ranks in the top 10 moments of my life, period.

    The only concert experience that's close was the Balance tour again in Worcester, 14th row in front of Ed. Only problem is I was by myself - had two tix but couldn't even give the second one away. Pre-internet/email/cell texting so it was hard to reach people. My wife and I were going to see them in Providence the next night, and she didn't want to see them two nights in a row. That concert was the single best concert experience I've ever had, they were on fire. It was just one of those nights, even compared to the next night in Providence. No specific moments like '91, but that entire show was just magical. As far as I'm concerned, that night was the absolute peak of Van Halen.
    Last edited by jrk5150; 03.10.16 at 02:09 PM.

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  16. #9
    Hot For Teacher salg's Avatar
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    1979 The Palladium in NYC !!! I was 15 years old and it was my first concert.My friends older brother took us.He knew we were crazy VH fans.Him not so much. We were sitting way up top. Really smoked to much pot to remember much !!! What sticks out in my mind is being blown away by Eddie.
    VH Shows

    5/12/79-NYC VH2
    7/26/80-Uniondale,NY Women & Children
    7/17/81-MSG,NYC Fair Warning
    10/9/82-Syracuse,NY Diver Down
    10/13/82-Uniondale,NY Diver Down
    3/30/84-MSG,NYC 1984
    4/14/84-Uniondale,NY 1984
    7/29/86-East Rutherford,NJ 5150
    8/2/86-Uniondale,NY 5150
    6/26/88-East Rutherford,NJ Monsters of Rock
    10/11/88-MSG,NYC OU812
    10/27/91-Uniondale,NY F.U.C.K.
    7/11,14/93-Jones Beach,NY RHRN
    4/26/95-Uniondale,NY Balance
    8/22/95-Jones Beach,NY Balance
    5/22/98-MSG,NYC III
    8/15/98-Jones Beach,NY III
    8/31/98-Syracuse,NY III
    6/22/04-East Rutherford,NJ Sam Reunion
    11/9/04-Montreal,Canada Sam Reunion
    10/1/07-Philadelphia,PA Dave Reunion
    11/8/07-Uniondale,NY Dave Reunion
    11/13/07-MSG,NYC Dave Reunion
    5/20/08-Uncasville,CT Dave Reunion
    5/23/08-MSG,NYC Dave Reunion
    2/28,3/1/12-MSG,NYC ADKOT
    3/24/12-Atlantic City,NJ ADKOT

    3/07 Hopped on a plane and flew to Cleveland to be there when they were inducted into the RRHOF!!!

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  18. #10
    Atomic Punk Bad to the Bone's Avatar
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    I first saw them in 91.

    My parents were pretty strict with that stuff so I had to wait till I was older.

    They postponed the show originally. I got incredibly sick in early 92, week in the hospital, 6 months on bed rest. I lost about 50lbs. I was still not doing great physically when the make up show rolled around. Doctor thought it would be too much but I went anyway. I don't remember very much to be honest. I think Hardline opened and I remember Neal Schon on stage.
    I remember judgment day and runaround. I remember Ed's solo but that's it.

    I think I slept for 2 days afterwards.

    I saw them in 93 and I vividly remember that show.

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  20. #11
    Atomic Punk Bad to the Bone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaboChris View Post
    14 years old. Cow Palace.

    It was THE talk of the town. My mom, bless her soul...bought 5 tickets.

    For a single woman not making much money, that was a sacrifice because it was a luxury. The weeks leading up to the show, two of my buddies and I did nothing but anticipate. I told both of them that I would take them, knowing full well, that I wasn't going to take one of them. That was fucked up. It still bothers me to this day, even though the friend I didn't take and I are still cool. I ended taking my best friend. We're all still friends today, though and it's water under the bridge.

    It's me, my best friend and two of my older brothers and one of their friends.

    I was a little stoner and was already a veteran of getting high and partying. We're on our way and I notice my brothers trying to be sneaky about snorting some crank. Me and my best friend were thinking to ourselves, "what about us"? "You ain't fooling anybody".

    Anyway, we get to the venue and it's GA. I was fucking excited as all fuck. Scared shitless too because I'd never been to a concert. I remember hearing "Over The Hills And Far Away" for the first time over the PA and liking it. I also recall a Cholo wearing a VH shirt and bobbing his head up and down to Zep. It struck me as odd, that he was a fan and has stuck with me ever since. Lights go out and hell breaks loose. BTO got annihilated by the brutal audience. Toilet paper rolls flung at them. VH hits the stage and pandemonium breaks out. I could barely stay on two legs from the constant crowd pushing. Basically, I was fighting for my life while trying to concentrate on Edward. I couldn't believe I was that close to him. He was in his LWAN get up. I was wearing a White and red CVH cap that I wore EVERYDAY. I could've swore I saw Ed smile at me. I was so close that I could see bubblegum on the bottom of his shoe when he sat down for his solo.

    My friend and I both bought "VH Kicks Ass" t-shirts and were sportin' them the next day. We looked hella stupid because we were walking around town wearing the same shirt like twins.

    Lots of peoole were wearing VH shirts around town and we all looked at each other in silent approval.

    The next day my friend who didn't go, was like "what happened to you guys..I was waiting".

    Instant guilt and felt like shit.
    They were expelling kids at my junior high for wearing the "van halen kicks ass t shirts"

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  22. #12
    Baluchitherium thismusicsux's Avatar
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    12.13.17 @ 10:54 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by salg View Post
    1979 The Palladium in NYC !!! I was 15 years old and it was my first concert.My friends older brother took us.He knew we were crazy VH fans.Him not so much. We were sitting way up top. Really smoked to much pot to remember much !!! What sticks out in my mind is being blown away by Eddie.

    old school. wasn't that a show they filmed for the videos?

    and this 1979 photo (i think is photoshopped though)


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  24. #13
    Hang 'Em High Reckless Fable's Avatar
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    11.28.17 @ 10:56 AM
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    I'm liking everyone's stories not because I'm a total douche (at least about this) trying to encourage the thread I started. I fucking love these stories. Amazing how impactful they all were to us, isn't it?

    BTW, Chris, you're a shady-ass motherfucker.

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  26. #14
    Atomic Punk Van Squalen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greenpaw View Post
    April 22, 1986
    Rosemont Horizon (and I still call it that. Fuck you "Allstate Arena" lol)
    Rosemont, IL


    You Really Got Me
    There's Only One Way to Rock
    Summer Nights
    Get Up
    Drum Solo
    Why Can't This Be Love
    5150
    Bass Solo
    Panama
    Best of Both Worlds
    Good Enough
    Guitar Solo
    I Can't Drive 55
    Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love

    Encore:
    Jump
    Rock Candy
    Rock and Roll


    Not just my first VH concert, it was my first concert ever. Never knew music could be THAT loud. Holy shit. Me and my buddy waited out in line overnight to buy tickets months before and we still ended up with the worst possible seats as far back in the balcony as you could get , yet at the time, we didn't care, it was awesome! We were in the building!!! All of this was new, the beer soaked floor, the pot smoke in the air. The Merch table. $14 for a shirt??? WTF lol now I'd be glad to pay that little for a concert shirt. Hell the tix were only like $16 I think? Maybe less.

    BTO opened, I was a kid, didnt' really know anything other than "Takin Care of Business". Ok, they're done. Then the wait for VH. It felt like eternity.

    House lights off....screaming, darkness....then Ed starts wailin. YES!!!!! Still dark, still wailin......drums........ Stop. HELLLLLOOOO CHICAGOOOOOOOOOOO (guitar into to YRGM)

    Lights come on.......it was like when THe Wizard of Oz goes from black and white to COLOR. Amazing. The energy, they were so amped up (and probably coked up lol) We were blown away the rest of the show. Voices thrashed from screaming for 2 hours. My first Ed solo was a religious experience, one of many more to come. I mean FUUUUUCK, the guy is A GUITAR GOD.

    What a show, still one of the best I've seen.


    They added a second Chicago show after the first one sold out, here's the audio. Couldn't find any recordings of the first night



    Second show I ever saw....DLR with Cinderella. Another show that ranks nar the top. Dave had a lot to prove and he did, that show was incredible.
    I love this story. The 5150 tour really was the coming of age rock tour for Gen X, wasn't it? Mine did not go as well as yours, LOL.

    I totally spaced on them playing Rock Candy. I wonder if they did in LA? I don't recall.

  27. #15
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
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    12.18.17 @ 03:51 AM
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    My older brother took me to see Van Halen at one of the Largo Maryland shows (two nights, can't remember which one).

    Taylor Swift is nice to look at. Adele can sing.

    Emperor Brett - "I can't believe you guys are analyzing song-by-song Van Halen III? What next, analyzing the script of Stroker Ace looking for some shred of Citizen Kane?"

    David Lee Roth did the impossible. He made Van Halen better. Deal with it!

    Preferred pronouns: he/him/his

    Hurricane Halen - Let's all gingery touch our sword tips!!!

    DONATE TO THE LINKS YA CHEAP BASTARDS!!!!

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